The Damages of Oil Spills

Oil Spills

In Arlington, VA, you will find the headquarters for the National Pollution Funds Center. This center is controlled by the United States Coast Guard and was created in order to address the transportation of oil within American waters. In addition to regulatory involvement, the center is also able to respond to spills at any point in the day with a variety of resources.

The Damage to Nature

As seen in the aftermath of the Deepwater Horizon fire and explosion, oil spills are extremely harmful to the environment. Oil spills affect marine birds, mammals, shellfish, and fish. It clogs the insulating ability of fur-bearing animals and weakens the water-repelling abilities of a bird’s feathers. When this happens, it exposes them to harsh environmental conditions that can lead to death. A trickle-down effect also carries negative consequences to the ecosystem.

The Damage to Companies

Those that work in the marine industry know the heavy regulations that are in place to prevent oceanic pollution. Any fuel or oil spill that leaves any sheen on the water has to be reported to the U.S. Coast Guard response center, and many states require local reporting as well. If your company, boat, or operations is found at fault for the spill, Federal law requires that your company bear the costs of cleanup. Since these cleanup costs can be financially devastating, fuel spill liability insurance is worth purchasing.

Do I Need EPLI Insurance at Work?

EPLI Insurance

If you run your own company, you have so many issues to address. You want to keep your employees and clients happy, all while making an acceptable profit. One thing you don’t want to add to your worry list, however, is possible litigation.  There are many types of insurance coverage that will protect you from unhappy customers or clients. If mistakes are made by your employees regarding products and services provided by your company, Errors and Omissions (E&O) insurance can cover you. If business management decisions are made negligently and can cause harm to your customers, Directors and Officers (D&O) insurance can protect your company.

But what about a disgruntled employee? Since you aren’t immune to employees seeking liability, it is important to consider EPLI (Employee Practices Liability Insurance) to protect your company.

Examples of Claims Covered Under EPLI

EPLI insurance coverage will protect you and your company against such litigation as:

  • Wrongful termination or demotion allegations
  • Sexual harassment claims
  • Discrimination charges
  • Claims of emotional distress

EPLI can protect you and your company from liability. Others who work for you can also be protected.

Call your insurance agent to see what coverage is best for you. A comprehensive package including D&O, E&O and EPLI may be the best fit for your company.

3 Key Safety Concerns That OSHA Warns Truckers About

OSHA

An OSHA inspection isn’t just conducted in manufacturing plants or industries that have highly visible safety concerns. Those in the trucking industry also have to worry about the health and safety of the truckers when they are behind the wheel or loading and unloading cargo.

Driving Concerns

According to OSHA, the trucking industry accounts for the most fatalities each year out of all the other industries, and most of these deaths occur during travel. Roadway safety includes concerns with driving when tired, other motorists, weather conditions, and shifting loads.

Loading and Unloading Concerns

Drivers are often responsible for both the loading and unloading of their trailers, and these actions present their own safety risks. Slips and falls are common, but so are back injuries from improper lifting and loading techniques. Forklift accidents could also cause injury, as could cargo falling off shelves or pallets and striking the driver.

Hazardous Materials Concerns

Truck drivers may be required to transport a load that contains chemicals or harmful contaminants. Exposure to the skin could cause burns, but there is also a threat of fire or spillage with the load. An incident could lead to serious injury or death.

OSHA has established inspection requirements to promote driver safety, as well as to protect those who may come in contact with the driver and the load. Following these requirements can reduce the risk of injury and death.

What Kinds of Insurance Do Propane Dealers Need?

Propane Dealers Need

Business insurance is a complex system of products, each designed to address the needs of a set of industries with common liabilities and risks. That’s why so many companies need to opt into a sequence of coverage options, sometimes using different carriers to meet those needs. If you work in the petroleum industry, there are some insurance types that are unique to your business, as well as others that are more common across industries that you also need. If your business has employees, you’ll need workers compensation. General liability is also a basic requirement, and if you have public storefronts, possibly public liability insurance as well.

Finding Coverage for Petroleum-Specific Risks

Once you have the basic insurance types that businesses with storefronts and customers all have to deal with, you also need to consider vehicle coverage for your delivery vehicles, as well as coverage that is specific to the risks involved with transporting and dispensing propane. Luckily, there are a few insurers who specialize in understanding propane dealer risks. If you find the right one, you might even be able to bring all of your coverage options together into a single umbrella policy that addresses all the coverage needs you have across your entire company. That way, you can save money and simplify your insurance planning and review each year.

3 Types of Insurance Every Tree Trimming Business Should Carry and Why

Tree Trimmer

Tree trimmers provide a valuable service suing specialized equipment and knowledge. It can be dangerous work, though, so the right insurance is a must for any tree company. Research into tree trimmer coverages shows three types of insurance that help protect your business.

Workers Compensation Insurance

Workers’ compensation covers medical expenses and lost wages if a worker is injured in a covered accident. This means your business isn’t responsible for those costs out of pocket, and any injured workers can take time to heal fully before they return to work. Many businesses have a legal obligation to carry worker’s compensation coverage.

Liability Insurance

Accidents can happen even when you are careful and follow standard safety practices. Liability insurance will pay for damages and legal expenses related to claims made against your company. It is a key piece in your tree trimmer coverages that can help you avoid financial disaster.

Equipment Breakdown Coverage

With the highly specialized and expensive equipment needed for tree work, a breakdown can have serious consequences. After all, broken equipment leads to lost wages for you and your teams. Equipment coverage will help you get your gear repaired or replaced quickly so you can get back to work.

Work to identify and implement safety practices that can help reduce accidents, injuries and breakdowns within your business. Carry the right insurance package to help protect your tree trimming business in case one does occur.

How To Protect Your Organization’s Volunteers

volunteer workers comp requirements

Workers compensation policies are designed to protect employees who are injured on the job. What happens when the person injured is not technically an employee, though? There are ways for your organization to protect its volunteers.

State Requirements

In most states, volunteers are not typically covered under workers compensation policies. In some states, however, volunteer workers comp requirements can be extended in certain instances:

  • Voluntary firefighters
  • Voluntary medical workers
  • Rostered volunteers
  • Volunteers who are compensated in non-financial ways

If your business relies heavily on volunteer efforts, it may be useful to look into ways to protect people, particularly if the work involves lifting or other manual labor.

Other Avenues

There are other options if your state does not have volunteer workers comp requirements. One common practice of nonprofit business owners is to extend the payment limits on their general liability policies or invest in umbrella policies to cover anyone – employed or otherwise – who is injured on their property. This would effectively cover volunteers who are injured in the course of their service.

When you rely heavily on volunteer work to make your business operate properly, you may want to find ways to protect the people who donate their time. Talk to your insurance agent about options for making sure everyone who makes your organization successful is protected.

IMO Changes to Maritime Operations

IMO

In January of 2020, maritime law changed in order to continue protecting the environment but potentially sacrificing the affordability of transport services across the seas. The International Maritime Organization (IMO) is the special agency appointed through the United Nations that takes care of the safety and security of the shipping trade but also prevents pollution of the seas and waterways by ships. The changes implemented this past January will affect the maritime industry and the ability of organizations to generate a healthy profit.

Regulated Operations

The change for shipping companies is a global marine fuel sulfur cap. So long as the implementation rate is high enough, the environment benefits. However, diesel prices will increase as the low-sulfur oil demand increases, but this will equate to higher freight rates. This is bad news for consumers. Additionally, the slower speeds will help the environment but frustrate consumers with increased travel times.

Controlled Supply

As the travel struggles increase for consumers, the industry will suffer from a limited transport capacity. With a capacity cut, the market may experience shifts in the supply-demand balance, with smaller carriers being the most vulnerable. The overall benefit, in order to compensate for the changes in routine and servicing, comes from developing a better discipline to stay relevant to the industry. Preparing for these adjustments can help a shipping company strategically plan for the future.

Finding a Life Insurance Policy When You Consume Cannabis

Consume Cannabis

Marijuana is now legal in either recreational or medicinal form as a licensed industry in most states. Over 30 states have some restricted access to medicinal cannabis that does not provide for a medicinal support industry. It’s clear that social and legal attitudes have changed, but for many consumers, support services like insurance are a little slower to respond. As a result, not every company has a responsive approach to coverage that a cannabis consumer needs. Some still regard it as an illegal substance, due to its federal legal status. Luckily, there are insurers who are moving to make realistic risk assessments about cannabis use, especially in light of its positive effects for patients with a select range of medical needs.

Insurance That Understands Cannabis

Buying life insurance marijuana consumer policies can mean searching a little for a carrier, but when you find one, you’ll find the industry has a range of approaches. Some providers simply treat smoking cannabis the same as smoking tobacco to simplify things, but the more responsive companies rate the client’s risk according to how much cannabis is consumed, the method of ingestion, and even whether they use is recreational or medical in some cases. That means a policy that better reflects your lifestyle, one that has costs and coverage provisions more in line with a realistic assessment of your daily risks.

The Advantages of Occupational Accident Insurance

occupational accident insurance in Georgia

Protecting your workers is essential to running a successful business. For many companies, this means taking out an appropriate insurance plan that covers basic needs like Workers’ Compensation. Of course, there are scenarios where this coverage will not be enough to meet the demands placed on your workers. To find protection from these risks, occupational accident policies might be worth consideration.

Weighing Out Your Options

Exploring your options with occupational accident insurance in Georgia can prove advantageous. If you operate in an industry with risks that differ from the coverage traditionally provided through a Workers’ Compensation plan, then this could be a good fit. Insurance for occupational accidents is usually less expensive than traditional plans because they do not include all of the standard benefits and inclusions. It does cover lost wages, medical expenses, disability coverage, and more. Points to consider when making your decision include:

  • Occupational insurance doesn’t cover legal fees
  • Costs are lower because less is covered
  • Best for very small industries with minimal health risks

Selecting the Best Policy

Taking out the wrong policy can cause more harm than good for your business. Give yourself the chance to explore your options and make the decision that will benefit your employees the most in the long run. This will help you maintain a sensible budget and still do your part to keep your team safe from harm.

What Are Managing General Underwriters?

MGU insurance

MGUs are either insurance brokers or agents who are given the authority to act on the part of insurance firms on a number of matters. As the name suggests, they are first and foremost underwriters. These are insurance professionals who calculate the risks inherent to insuring either individuals or assets and then, based on this risk, determine the premiums insurers should charge to issue coverage for these individuals or assets. In addition to acting as underwriters, MGUs may also carry out other tasks as instructed by insurance firms. These include:

  • Binding and issuing insurance coverage
  • Overseeing billing and collecting premiums
  • Handling insurance claims
  • Marketing insurance products
  • Managing risk

While it may seem as though contracting another company to take responsibility for these tasks could increase risk exposure for insurance companies, there are actually many benefits to hiring a reliable MGU.

What Are The Benefits of Using a MGU?

As explained by MGU insurance, one of the primary advantages to hiring a MGU is the expertise they can bring to the table. Their knowledge of specialized markets and geographic regions can minimize risks and lower execution costs. It may be expensive to develop this type of expertise internally. Finally, as part of an expansion strategy, they can offer insurers growth opportunities through access to expanded agent and distribution networks.

MGUs can handle many aspects of the day-to-day activities of an insurance firm. Most importantly, they can help insurers both expand and improve their business. As such, utilizing the services of an MGU can be a profitable decision.